I am a proud member of Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International (FGBMFI Nigeria) – a layman’s fellowship founded 60 years ago by an American Armanian dairy farmer called Demos Shakarian, who had a passion and vision to call men back to God.

FGBMFI has presence in well over 160 countries and still counting, and the goal is to reach men in every corner of the world. I encourage you to join a chapter near you, if you have any issues locating one, please let me know and I’ll surely be of help.

Mazi Sam Ohuabunwa

I have been a member of this great fellowship for about 2 years and I am loving every moment of it. I love the motivating stories, spiritual upliftment, love, friendship, connections and networking. Mazi Sam Ohuabunwa, Ex-Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Pfizer Pharmaceuticals Nigeria now Neimeth Pharmaceuticals International Plc., the founder of the Sam Ohuabunwa Foundation of Economic Empowerment (SOFEE) and President, Nigerian American Chamber of Commerce, was the guest testifier at the sheraton executive chapter of the Full Gospel Business Mens Fellowship – FGBMFI NIgeria dinner meeting held weekly in Lagos.

1 Samuel 2:9b says for by strength shall no man prevail.

I consider it a blessing to have attended that meeting because Mazi Ohuabunwa remains one of Nigeria’s finest and honest business executives, entrepreneur and social crusader that one should endeavour to emulate.

14 Ways to Survive Tough Economic Times by Mazi Sam Ohuabunwa

1. Adopt the entrepreneurial paradigm

Everyone who wants to survive in crunching economic times must change their thinking. Ask yourself; are there needs to met? Are there problems to be solved? How else can I add value?

2. Enhance your marketability and competitiveness through education and acquiring new skills.

This is the time you should leverage your influence.

3. Create multiple streams of income

Everyone should have at least 4 streams of income: – Earn Wages: If no one pays you then pay yourself. – Earn dividends: invest in any venture that can pay you dividends. For example, shares, bonds. – Earn rental income: assets are supposed to be working, so rent your assets. – Earn Interest: negotiate with your bankers to pay you interest on your savings. Eccl. 4:6

4. Explore and exploit the trend.

Look out for opportunities in different sectors. agriculture, internet, technology, real estate, training etc. There are opportunities everywhere.

5. Rethink the Business

Ask yourself questions why this business? Don’t continue with a business that is producing no results.

Radically re-engineer your work and model. What changes in our core work or management process do we need to make to achieve our goals?

6. Activate a thinking mind

A new mindset open to possibilities. A mind of democratic hospitality to other views and opinions. A mind that establish processes to the benefit of the business. 6. Intensify your marketing efforts Your marketing should focus on Concentration, Innovation and Penetration.

7. Cut costs

Create a budget and stick to it. Carry less cash – go cashless.

8. Leverage on Technology

Technology creates a platform for you to take your business to the next level. Some strategies are as follows: social media, PPC, sms marketing etc. Contact me if you need help with SEO in Nigeria.

9. Be lean

Lean means shedding off excess luggage and carrying only what needs to be carried.

10. Outsource, lease rather than outright purchase.

Reduce expenses. Don’t tie down your capital, instead of hardware put it in software.

11. Consider franchising

Franchising is a great way to integrate new partners into your business.

12. Develop personal virtues.

Vision to see and Faith to believe. Persevere, be hopeful and trust your instincts.

13. Note the following key truths.

Man is capable of doing so much. Time is limited but you have enough time to accomplish. Man can learn to utilise capabilities in many ways.

14. Leverage on the God factor.

Seek the Lord and invite him into your business. God who created us has given ways to succeed and that is exemplified in the live of Peter and Co. when they toiled all night without catching a single fish.

Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They say unto him, We also go with thee. They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing. 4 But when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore: but the disciples knew not that it was Jesus. 5 Then Jesus saith unto them, Children, have ye any meat? They answered him, No. 6 And he said unto them, Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye shall find. They cast therefore, and now they were not able to draw it for the multitude of fishes. – John 21:3

I hope this helps you as you start to grow your business under harsh economic conditions. Thanks to the leadership of Sheraton executive chapter of FGBMFI Nigeria for making this possible.

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The next meeting is targeted at executives in the oil and gas sector. Are you an executive in this sector? Do you know anyone who is an executive and would love to attend a dinner with others in this sector.